Tag Archives: rest

What I did during my last mini sabbatical week

Hey friend,

I took my mini sabbatical week off a couple of weeks ago.

In case you’re wondering what that’s all about, I’ve been taking every 7th week off to rest and recharge since October 2015.

(The concept of mini sabbaticals isn’t mine: I’ve been listening to Seanwes podcast for creative businesses, and that’s a brilliant idea I learned from him.)

Every sabbatical is different – sometimes I work on projects I don’t normally have time to do. Other times I just relax and veg out.

Most of all, I just try not to have any deadlines or other people’s priorities drive my decisions if I can help it.

So here are some highlights from my most recent mini sabbatical.

We purged.

To be more precise, we went through my clothes and books and got rid of about 80% of them.

I read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo a few weeks ago and was totally inspired.

I grew up in a somewhat of a pack rat-ish household, so the clutter’s never bothered me very much before.

But it bothers Dave, and as my business grows, our small apartment has been bursting at the seams with all of the boxes of products and shipping supplies, I knew I needed to make more room.

To follow the KonMari method described in the book, you must go through your belongings throughly and discard what doesn’t spark joy in you.

Thank goodness Dave was here to help because it was so tiring and overwhelming!! πŸ˜…

After a day of sorting, we took BIG piles of my clothes to Goodwill and some of the items went to our neighborhood consignment shop.

It’s AMAZING to walk into my closet now!

Much more spacious and every piece of clothing and accessory I actually want to wear πŸ˜†

It’s true what Marie talks about in her book – it’s not just the physical space you’re reclaiming in your home – it’s really more about the mental weight you’re shedding by discarding what doesn’t bring you joy any more.

I’d held onto SO MUCH for so long… sigh.

I did the same process for books and other papers (documents, receipts, etc.) on that Sunday by myself because Dave was working, and got rid of most of my books/papers.

We sold some books and DVDs and rest was donated and all papers were shredded.

Now I only have the books that I truly enjoy, which turned out to be comics and arts & crafts books!

This method helps you strengthen your intuition and gives you a permission to let go of what’s not serving you any more.

It’s no wonder her students don’t rebound and start collecting things again. I love the space I tidied up so much that I’ll be so selective about what to add in the future.

I also feel more content and peaceful.

It’s funny how your “wanting mind” quiets down as you get rid of so much stuff.

It reminds you that you actually DO have everything you need at this moment. What a wonderful feeling!

(We’ve continued to purge over the last week and can’t wait to finish going through rest of our stuff! I’m definitely addicted πŸ˜€)

OK, so here are some other fun things I did during my sabbatical!

I’ve been working on these kitty ornaments in my pottery class.

I made a few pet ornaments for friends who’ve lost their pets lately.

They were so cute that I decided to make more for my shop!

I still have some work left on these new kitty ornaments, but they’ll be available for purchase in the next month or so!

(Note: if you want the first dibs on these cuties 🐱, be sure to sign up for my newsletter!)

Speaking of adorable, I visited my friend’s new puppy during my sabbatical.

Meet Nelly.

When I met her, she’d just turned 8 weeks old.

A tiny, sweet, sleepy puppy.

Puppies can turn any day into a happy day, can’t they??

Oh, and I finished my new Tacoma art during my week off.

It’s work but it’s fun work 😁

To tell you the truth, for a small business owner like myself, sadly the art making time is actually pretty limited. So when I get to spend hours just making art, it’s pure joy.

I’m really happy with how it turned out and am glad a bunch of Tacoma friendsΒ have approved it so far πŸ‘

I’ve become quite charmed by Tacoma as I spend more time down there this year – it’s got art, history, and plenty of quirkiness.

Do you love it? Know someone who would? It’s available as art prints and notecards in my shop 😘

It was a really nice sabbatical. Productive but felt so restful at the same time.

Can’t wait to do it again in June!

xo

Let me tell you what I did on my first sabbatical week.

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Hello guys!

It’s so nice to be back from my mini sabbatical week! For those of you who haven’t heard, I decided to take every 7th week off to step back from the day-to-day and recharge. I just had my very first sabbatical week the previous week, and it was really awesome!

As promised, I wanted to report back and share how I spent my week off. To me, this was not a vacation, per se, but an opportunity to breathe and do something I don’t normally get to do.

1) I created a new drawing tutorial.

Some of you may have seen it, but I participated in a blog hop with Kelly Johnson of Wings, Worms, and Wonder on Wednesday October 7 as a guest blogger! I had always wanted to do tutorials, so I was excited and honored when she approached me to join her.

She asked each participating artist to come up with a tutorial that inspires people to connect/re-connect with the nature. I thought about what I could teach people and decided to create this Fall Leaf Marker Drawing tutorial! I’ve received positive feedback from folks that it was very accessible and inspired them to try marker drawing. I really enjoyed the process, too, and hope to create more tutorials in the future!

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2) I cooked more.

I might have mentioned this here before, but I’m not that into cooking. I don’t dislike it but just don’t enjoy spending a lot of time cooking up some gourmet meals (that’s more my husband’s thing, which I’m very grateful for!) I enjoy eating simple tasty meals that are quick to make.

But there is something about non-regular cooking, like making jams, baking, and making fermented foods that I like. It might be because the process is fairy simple, and you get to enjoy the products over time? Canning and fermentation make me feel very empowered, too. You can turn some fresh ingredients into things that last for a long, long time. Magical!

I used to do these things more often before I got serious about my art business. Even though I’m not juggling a day job and art any more, I’ve been plenty busy and was feeling like I didn’t have the energy to do much else.

My husband had been asking me to make more jam because we were out for a while. So I decided to tackle that during my sabbatical week!

We buy fresh fruits in bulk during the summer and freeze them. I prefer to make jam when the weather has cooled down because our apartment gets super hot during the summer, and it wouldn’t be fun to do water bath canning then… :p

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I made three kinds of jams this time! Our all time favorite blueberry, apricot, and I made a new addition, spiced apricot with cinnamon and clove. YUM.jam02_lores jam03_lores

It’s kind of a long story, but I’ve been on an elimination diet of no grain flour for a while. But after making so much yummy jam, I really wanted to have something to eat it with. So I did some research and found this easy almond flour muffin recipe!

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It was really quick to make and was delicious! It has a nutty, earthy flavor, and the texture is very similar to cornbread. It went really well with my jam too!almond-muffins03_lores

And I just generally spent more time cooking during the week. I love to eat and am happy when my creations turn out yummy!

3)Β  I made art for fun.

I still make something every day, but nowadays I spend much less time making art just for fun. During the sabbatical week, I tried to turn off my work mode and doodled my little heart out.

Here are some of the drawings I made!

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Aren’t these fun?? As I shared in this blog post, I always get new inspiration and fresh ideas for future work when I’m playing around.

4) More friend/family hang out time

I had a few dates planned with my friends but ended up having just one for one reason or another. It worked out fine because, well, I’m an introvert and I recharge by being alone πŸ™‚ My husband was away for work for a few days too, so it was a good balance between having a nice quiet time alone and hanging out with him when he was home!

5) Veg out!

Don’t worry, I wasn’t being productive and doing things all the time, either. I did sleep in and just veg out too! In one afternoon, Dave and I just watched a whole bunch of Netflix shows on our couch. It was very nice πŸ™‚

He was helping me be a couch potato!
Our kitty was helping me be a couch potato = his special talent

It took me a couple of days to turn off the work mode, but I really enjoyed the slow week. I totally feel more energized and calm this week. I’m really glad I decided to schedule regular time-off and can’t wait for my next mini sabbatical! I’m gonna need it πŸ™‚

Have a wonderful week!

xoxo Yuko

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